The District Council Website has a page here on the current review of parliamentary constituencies. There is a public consultation running until December 5th.
You can find the detailed proposals for our local constituencies here.
The main proposed changes for South East Essex are:
- The three Wickford wards move from “Rayleigh and Wickford” constituency to “Basildon and Billericay”.
- Two council wards in Pitsea will move into Castle Point.
- Two Castle Point wards (St James and Victoria) will move into Southend West
- One ward -Ashingdon and Canewdon – will move from the old Rayleigh and Wickford Ward into Rochford and Southend West.
- “Rayleigh and Wickford” constituency is losing Wickford but will have Bicknacre, Rettendon Runwell, two of the Hanningfields plus South Woodham. So it will be renamed “Rayleigh and Woodham Ferrers “.
- According to the proposals, “Rayleigh and Woodham Ferrers” will also gain one ward from Maldon – namely Purleigh. We have to say this is a bit of a surprise, Woodham Ferrers has been part of a Rayleigh constituency before but a bit of Maldon hasn’t been part of the same constituency as Rayleigh since 1832.
- These boundary changes are happening because the government is deliberating reducing the numbers of MPs in the UK, which doesn’t sound particularly democratic. It seems a bad omen that the last time that a MP represented both Rayleigh and a part of Maldon, in 1832, he was the ludicrously named William Pole-Tylney-Long Wellesley ( yes he had a quadruple- barrelled name) and is described by Wikipedia as “an Anglo-Irish Nobleman with a notoriously dissipated lifestyle”. This fellow has a good claim to be the worst Tory MP of all time. (Just read the Wikipedia article)
- We also wonder whether Purleigh has much in common with Rayleigh, apart from similar names.
If you aren’t happy with these proposals, have a look at the Boundary Commision Report, at the end they give enough information on the number of voters in each council ward for you to make your own proposals. but constituencies have to have between 71031 and 78507 electors – without Purleigh, Rayleigh and Woodham Ferrers will fall short.